CSS Button No Image Css3Menu.com

Baseball Prospectus home
  
  
Click here to log in Click here for forgotten password Click here to subscribe

Premium and Super Premium Subscribers Get a 20% Discount at MLB.tv!

<< Previous Article
Overthinking It: Yasie... (08/12)
<< Previous Column
Premium Article Monday Morning Ten Pac... (08/05)
Next Column >>
Premium Article Monday Morning Ten Pac... (08/19)
Next Article >>
Premium Article Daily Roundup: Around ... (08/13)

August 12, 2013

Monday Morning Ten Pack

August 12, 2013

by Jason Parks and BP Prospect Staff


Mark Appel, RHP, Astros (Low-A Quad Cities)
Mark Appel earned his first win as a professional during his seventh appearance, his fifth as a member of the Quad City River Bandits in the Low-A Midwest League. Appel worked five innings, giving up two hits and a walk while striking out a pair. Neither of the two runs he allowed was earned, as batters had difficulty squaring the ball up against him. He came out firing against the powerful (though Buxtonless) Cedar Rapids Kernels, throwing almost exclusively 98 mph fastballs in the first inning. The velocity continued to sit at 96-98 in both the second and third innings before settling in around 93-96, while still touching 98, in innings four and five. The arm action continues to be easy, repeatable, and clean, and he threw downhill while working the bottom half of the zone pretty well, as evidenced by his 12-to-2 groundout-to-fly out ratio. With an approach typical of college pitchers, Appel started the game by trying to get hitters swinging outside, and looked much better an inning or two later when he started to trust his fastball to establish the inner half. His slider continues to be a swing-and-miss pitch thrown at 85-86 mph, while he also showed a polished changeup in the same velocity range. The slider at its best is a plus-plus pitch with sharp two-plane break that makes it nearly unhittable, although he will need to work at making it a plus-plus pitch more consistently. His changeup works well as a perfect slow-ball complement to his fastball, given how well he maintains his arm action, though my only minor complaint with the pitch is that I wish there were a little more speed differential between it and his breaking ball. As Appel continues to gain confidence in his fastball while honing the consistency of his slider, he's going to be a strikeout pitcher at the highest level. His cool, poised demeanor on the mound also serves him well, and in this game he clearly recognized the importance of pitching to contact to make the most of his limited pitch count after a long college season. The Astros have no need to rush Appel, even though they could, so don't be surprised to see him spend most, if not all, of 2014 in Double- and Triple-A. ––Patrick Ebert and Chris Wimmers

More, including video, here.

Kyle Hendricks, RHP, Cubs (Triple-A Iowa)
After posting a 1.85 ERA in 21 Double-A starts, Hendricks impressed in his Triple-A debut last week by tossing seven innings of one-run ball. An eighth-round pick out of Dartmouth in 2011, Hendricks was acquired from Texas last summer as part of the Cubs’ haul for Ryan Dempster. While the 23-year-old righty lacks big stuff, he’s an extreme strike thrower and commands a deep arsenal that includes four- and two-seam fastballs, a cutter, slider, curve, and change. He keeps hitters off balance by varying his fastball velocity, often throwing it anywhere between 86-94 mph and sitting around 88-90. His stuff doesn’t have plus movement, but the command and deception––particularly with his slow mid-70s changeup––give him a chance for success. Hendricks likely isn’t more than a no. 4 or 5 starter––and that’s probably his ceiling––but the pitchability should enable a big-league future. –Jason Cole

Video (2012): https://vimeo.com/43220029

Alex Jackson, C, Rancho Bernardo High School (Escondido, CA)
It was an honor to join Joe Hamrahi on stage this weekend as we presented Alex Jackson with the first annual Baseball Prospectus Prospect of the Year Award, at the Perfect Game All-American Classic in San Diego. Jackson is a dual threat talent, with an easy plus-plus arm behind the plate, near elite pop times, and big power from the right side. It's a similar profile to high-ceiling prospect Jorge Alfaro, which should give you some indication how special this player could be. Getting to watch the talent on the field opened my eyes to his physical abilities, but the way he carried himself off the field, the natural leadership qualities and maturity he possesses, opened my eyes to the type of makeup that can make his ceiling more than just an exaggerated fantasy. When physical talent and makeup join forces, the end result can change the fortunes of an organization, and Jackson looks like a player well on his way to that reality. –Jason Parks

Keury Mella, RHP, Giants (Rookie AZL Giants)
One of the rookie Arizona League’s more intriguing arms, Mella is flashing a big fastball and producing results in his first state-side season. The 20-year-old righty signed with the Giants prior to last season for $275,000 and made his debut in the Dominican Summer League. Pitching in the AZL this summer, he has a 2.30 ERA while striking out 32 and walking eight in 27 innings. Mella’s stuff is more intriguing than the numbers, however, as he’s pounding the zone with a heavy 90-94 mph two-seam fastball and running his four-seamer into the 95-96 mph range. His delivery and secondaries––including a hard curveball and changeup––are works in progress, but he’s showing a feel to pitch with a potentially dominant fastball. –Jason Cole

The rest of this article is restricted to Baseball Prospectus Subscribers.

Not a subscriber?

Click here for more information on Baseball Prospectus subscriptions or use the buttons to the right to subscribe and get access to the best baseball content on the web.


Cancel anytime.


That's a 33% savings over the monthly price!


That's a 33% savings over the monthly price!

Already a subscriber? Click here and use the blue login bar to log in.

Related Content:  Minnesota Twins,  Prospects,  Scouting,  Minor Leagues

12 comments have been left for this article.

<< Previous Article
Overthinking It: Yasie... (08/12)
<< Previous Column
Premium Article Monday Morning Ten Pac... (08/05)
Next Column >>
Premium Article Monday Morning Ten Pac... (08/19)
Next Article >>
Premium Article Daily Roundup: Around ... (08/13)

RECENTLY AT BASEBALL PROSPECTUS
Premium Article Transaction Analysis: Cardinals Trade from t...
Premium Article Transaction Analysis: Andrew Miller Goes to ...
Premium Article Transaction Analysis: If You've Got Asdrubal...
Premium Article Transaction Analysis: A's hire A's
Premium Article Transaction Analysis: Not Just A Pretty Face
Premium Article Transaction Analysis: Yankees Get a Proper I...
Premium Article Transaction Analysis: The Great Big David Pr...

MORE FROM AUGUST 12, 2013
Premium Article Minor League Update: Games of August 9-11
Premium Article Baseball Therapy: Using the Closer to Keep a...
Premium Article What You Need to Know: Rivera's Rare Hiccup
Premium Article The Prospectus Hit List: Monday, August 12
The Week in Quotes: August 5-11
Fantasy Article Fantasy Freestyle: Inflation Nation
Premium Article Daily Roundup: Around the League: August 12,...

MORE BY JASON PARKS
2013-08-16 - Premium Article Eyewitness Accounts: August 16, 2013
2013-08-16 - Scouting the Draft: Summer Circuit: PG All-A...
2013-08-14 - Fringe Average Podcast: Episode 17
2013-08-12 - Premium Article Monday Morning Ten Pack: August 12, 2013
2013-08-09 - Premium Article Eyewitness Accounts: August 9, 2013
2013-08-05 - Premium Article Monday Morning Ten Pack: Monday, August 5
2013-07-30 - Premium Article Eyewitness Accounts: July 30, 2013
More...

MORE MONDAY MORNING TEN PACK
2013-09-03 - Premium Article Monday Morning Ten Pack: Arizona Fall League...
2013-08-26 - Premium Article Monday Morning Ten Pack: August 26, 2013
2013-08-19 - Premium Article Monday Morning Ten Pack: August 19, 2013
2013-08-12 - Premium Article Monday Morning Ten Pack: August 12, 2013
2013-08-05 - Premium Article Monday Morning Ten Pack: Monday, August 5
2013-07-29 - Premium Article Monday Morning Ten Pack: July 29, 2013
2013-07-22 - Premium Article Monday Morning Ten Pack: July 22, 2013
More...